Saturday, July 10, 2021

Mary, Mother of Jesus Catholic Community Lturgy,15th Week of Extra-Ordinary Time July 10, 2021. Presider: Lee Breyer, Readers; Joan Pesce and Mary Al Gagnon, Music Minister: Linda Lee and Rick Miller

 



                  

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85108095506?pwd=Y3IyS0xkaWZ1WGRUOXlZMm5qcE1Fdz09         

Zoom link for video- 4:00 PM Eastern Daylight Time

ID 851- 0809-5506

Passcode 1066

Theme: The Lesson: Listening and Learning

      Welcome 

JOAN P:  Welcome everyone who came to celebrate today’s liturgy with the Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community.  Here, all are welcome, those who have been with us for a while and those who may be new today. Again, to all we say: “welcome.”

We invite everyone to pray the liturgy.  At the start, everyone will be muted (silenced) except for the presider and readers who will be unmuted so that what they say can be heard by everyone.  Everyone else is invited to “pray out loud” - whether speaking or singing - in the parts marked by ALL.  Although many of us may not hear everyone all the time, we know that Jesus does. 

MARY AL:  However, there are exceptions:  During the shared homily (it is just after the Gospel), we ask you to raise your hand if you would like to contribute to it…(you will be noted when…), unmute yourself for that time so everyone can hear you, and then please re-mute yourself when you are finished talking, so that another person has the same opportunity you had to be heard. 

Also, please have your bread and wine (or juice) near you as we pray the Eucharistic Prayer…and then they will be convenient for you at the Consecration and Communion times.

Gathering Song: Gather us In      (Marty Haugen)



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xnom5mFwJaI

Opening Prayer

LEE: Nurturing God, you gave us a human expression of yourself in the person of Jesus.  Through him, you showed us how to both recognize what is “sacred” in your creation and to express it in our yearning to be an inspired and better person on the planet Earth.  Jesus, through his teachings and examples, taught us how to live as you want us to do and also how to pray so that we may have your kindom come on earth as it is in heaven.  His lived gospel-described time on earth was short, three years. In that relatively short time, from his baptism to his crucifixion, Jesus taught many lessons to his disciples and those he met on his earthly journey, many records of which are described in the holy scriptures.  From them, we could – and many do – learn about how to live a Christ-like life, the type for which we pray when we say “… may his kindom come, his will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” We pray that we will learn - during our time on the earth - the same lesson that Jesus taught us in the gospels.

Reconciliation Rite

JOAN P and ALL: Loving God, Father and Mother of mercy and compassion, we ask you to bless us so that we may not only learn to accept - but also to act upon - the beliefs that all peoples, wherever they may be on earth, are all one family … and that Family is Your Family.

We ask that you grant us the gifts of pardon and peace that were taught and demonstrated to us in the life and teachings of Jesus, even to his death on cross.

We also ask you for the grace of your forgiveness so that we may absolve from our minds any and all of our thoughts and actions that may be hurtful to people of other nationalities, beliefs, races and life styles.

And then, Merciful God, may we forgive each other for our mutual failures to care for one another and for our planet Earth. 

We ask all this in the names of Jesus and of the Spirit, the model for our living and the wisdom to do it well.

Glory to Our God

MARY AL and ALL: Glory to God in the highest, and peace to God’s people on earth.  Creator God, heart of the universe, we thank you for the breath of the Spirit at work in everything that exists, everywhere in this ever-expanding cosmos.  Jesus, you have taught us, by your example during your time on the earth, how we are to live with one another in the Spirit of your love. Your grace can strengthen us in our attempts to do this in our life time on earth.  For this, we give you glory. 

Glory to God, Glory   (Dan Schutte)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rbarqE9o8QY

The Liturgy of the Word

LEE: The first reading is from the letter of Paul to the Ephesians, and it is from the opening passage of his message. He told them that God’s plan for us from our earliest time on earth has gone very wrong on our end, but it will be worked out, corrected, by Jesus -- but not by him alone; we are all participants in the process of its reconciliation. That is the setting for interpreting Paul’s message, chapter 1, verses 11 to 14 today.  It will read for us by JOAN PESCE.

JOAN P:  In Jesus, we were willed by God to have an inheritance.   For in God’s plan, we were predestined to praise the glory of the Most High by being the first to place our hope in Christ.  When you first heard the Good News of salvation, the word of truth, and also because you believed in it, you were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the pledge of our inheritance. The Holy Spirit is our sanctification.

JOAN P and ALL:  And now we assert our acceptance of Paul’s story, the role of the Christ as an inheritance in our lives, by saying

Amen, Alleluia

MARY AL:   Today’s gospel is a story from the sixth chapter, verses 7 to 13, of Mark’s gospel. It describes what is known by scholars and others as the historic “Mission of the Twelve Apostles.” It will be read for us by LEE BREYER.

LEE:  Jesus called together the twelve disciples to send them out in pairs to preach to the people.  He gave them authority over any unclean spirits that they might meet on their mission, as well as a few instructions for their journey.  Jesus told them “do not even think you will need a lot of additional equipment for this, you are the equipment.” He told them that they should take nothing for their journey, except a staff, a walking stick – but no bread or other food, no bag, no money in their belts.  And, as for clothing, he said that they were to wear sandals, and he also told them “Do not even take a spare tunic.” 

Jesus also instructed them: “wherever you enter a house, stay there until you are ready to leave.  If you find a place that does not welcome you or listen to you, quietly go.  Then just shake the dust off the soles of your feet as a testimony against them.”

And so the disciples went off in pairs, preaching as they went.  They cast out many demons along the way, and anointed many people who were sick and would be healed by them.

This is the good news that Mark has passed on to us today.  And to show our acceptance of it we respond… 

Thanks be to God.

Alle, Alle, Alleluia   (Linda Lee Miller)



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIHnZn3JjcM

Homily Starter/Community Sharing

Lee Breyer


Our Community Statement of Faith

MARY AL:  We believe in you, the Divine Mystery that is beyond all definition and understanding, the creator and heart of all that has ever existed, that exists now or that will ever exist in this ever expanding universe.

JOAN P and ALL: We believe in Jesus of Nazareth, the holy human and enlightened soul who carried the message of God’s Word to the world … the One, through whose time and lived example on earth, showed us how we are to care for ourselves and for others … the one who is the heart of God’s compassion.  He is the bright star in the firmament of God’s prophets, mystics and saints.  It is through the study of Jesus’ person and the grace for understanding what we learn about it that that we have a developing story of Salvation … in summary, the knowledge and belief that we are all holy persons, that we were all born holy and that we will be holy forevermore.  

LEE and ALL:  We believe in the Spirit, the one that inspires our innermost life.  She keeps the Anointed One present to the awareness of those who are searching for meaning and wholeness in their lives.  She strengthens our calls to follow Jesus as a human example of God’s love and She is the one who helps us to reach deep within ourselves so that we can find Her healing and energy in ourselves whenever our spirits grow weary.

And we believe that God’s kin-dom is here and now, stretched out all around us for those who with eyes to see it, hearts to receive it, and hands to bring it to fulfillment in our time on earth.

Prayers of the Community

LEE:  With heads and hearts mindful of our Creator’s unconditional love for each one of us, let us bring our needs and those of our friends and family members to our Loving God.  After each intercession, we respond: 

God of compassion, to you we offer these prayers.

JOAN P:  For those who are or have been injured in the tragedy of the Florida condo tower collapse, let us pray.  

    Our response is: God of compassion, to you we offer these prayers.

JOAN P:  For the families and friends of those who have died in that disaster or who are unaccounted for, let us pray.  

    Our response is: God of compassion, to you we offer these prayers.

JOAN P:  For Sally who has found her way home - and for Janet whose present time is painful and whose future is unsettled, let us pray.

   Our response is:  God of compassion, to you we offer these prayers.

JOAN P:  For those people who are working so hard for peace and justice issues and have uncertain outcomes ahead of them, let us pray.

   Our response is: God of compassion, to you we offer these prayers.

JOAN P:  And for whomever or whatever do we want to bring to our prayers at this time?

[Pause briefly for any comments]

LEE:   Holy Creator, we bring these requests to you, knowing well that you hear us, but at times your response to them might not be what we would expect in our expressed need.  

LEE and ALL: Bless all of us in our concerns for our brothers and sisters, friends and family members, who are not with us now.  May they find your gift of love for them and peace in their time of need.

Preparation of the Gifts

MARY AL and ALL:  Blessed are you, O God. Through your goodness we have our bread for your blessing.  It will become for us the Body of Jesus, the Christ.

Blessed are you, O God.  And through your goodness we have this fruit of the vine. It will become for us the Blood of Jesus, the Christ.

Heavenly God, all of us united in this sacrament by the love of Jesus who proclaimed your power for the poor and oppressed.  We pray that, like his first disciples, we may live as prophetic witnesses to the Gospel, as people who are versed with the wisdom of his teachings.  

Eucharistic Prayer

JOAN P and ALL:  Gracious God, you embrace us with your extravagant affection in our times of both blessedness and weakness.  You are always with us…you live in us and we live in you.  In this festive meal, your Spirit is poured out on each of us gathered in this Zoom group of your friends and disciples. We ask that your Spirit spread herself to those of our more extensive community who are not with us at this time.  So, Loving God, we rejoice in the grace with which you have blessed as we sing the results of your blessings.

Holy, Holy, Holy   (Linda Lee Miller)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=orKBBIj5LZA
 


MARY AL and ALL:  We thank you for the gift of Jesus of Nazareth in history – and the gift of Jesus in faith.  Through him, you breathe life into us.  He was moved by his vision of your constant presence in everyone he met, everywhere he went.  He revealed you in everything did in his life well lived.  And when his time on earth had come to an end, Jesus – aware of and accepting his destiny – gave up his life for the values that he deeply believed, lived and taught…his conviction that love is stronger than death. And then, in providing an example of this wisdom for people in ages to come, he opened wide his arms…and died.  Shortly later, the Spirit that lived in Jesus resurrected him to a new life, a promise she made to each one of us too.  He showed us, through his experience on this earth, that life is truly eternal and that love is immortal.  And so, we know that Jesus is with us today and with our sister, Sally– as he will be through the end of time. 

[With an outstretched arm to our bread and wine, we pray the Consecration together.]

LEE: We remember the gift that Jesus gave us on the night before he died.  He gathered with his friends to share a final Passover meal.  And it was at that supper that Jesus took bread, said the blessing and shared it with them saying: take this all of you, and eat it.  This bread is you; this bread is me.  We are one body, the presence of God in the world.  When you do this, remember me and all that I have taught you.  This is the new and everlasting covenant.

[short pause]

LEE: In the same way, Jesus took a cup of wine, said the blessing and gave it to his friends saying: take this, all of you, and drink it.  This wine is you; this wine is me.  We are one blood, the presence of God in the world.  When you do this, remember me and all that I have taught you.  This is the new and everlasting covenant.

MARY AL:  Jesus, who was with God in the beginning of the creation of the heavens and the earth, is with us now in this bread.  The Spirit, of whom the prophets spoke in history, is with us now in this cup.  Let us proclaim this mystery of faith.

Jesus has died.  Christ is risen.  The Divine Presence lives in us - and through us - in the world today.

JOAN:  Caring God, we know that you bless your church throughout the world.  We, your people ask for your grace that we may continually grow in our love and caring for Francis, our Pope, Bridget Mary, our Bishop, and for everyone with whom we come in contact - especially those who live on the margins of church and society.  They are all our brothers and sisters, all members of your Blessed Family. We remember also those, living and dead, who touched our lives and left their footprints on our hearts.  We remember especially... (mention  a name here, if you wish to.)      

[ make a short pause here]

JOAN and ALL:  We believe that the Spirit of God is at work in and among us and will do more than we could ever ask or imagine.  We believe that it is through Christ, with Christ, and in Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, that all glory and honor is yours, Creator God, forever and ever.

Great Amen   (Linda Lee Miller)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dy76fpfkNsg


The Sharing of Peace

MARY AL:  Jesus, you said to your disciples and, through them, to each one of us…“my peace I leave you; my peace I give you.”  Friends, let us extend that peace now to one another as we raise a hand in a blessing and say: “Let us share the peace of Christ among us and may it always be with us.”  

Peace is flowing like a river


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qWnEIX5YUE

The Prayer of Jesus

JOAN P:   Holy One, you are in, around and among us.  We celebrate your many names.  May your Wisdom come, your will be done, now and always as She does from the depths within us.  Each day you give us all we need.  You support us with your power, so that we may act wisely and with courage.  For you, Loving God, are always in the dwelling place within us, the empowerment around us, and the celebration among us, now and forever. Amen.   (Adapted, Miriam Therese Winter, MMS) 

Community Communion

JOAN P and ALL:   And now we consume the Body and Blood of Christ that we consecrated here today.  And when we are doing that, we say “I am (or ‘you are’) the Christ in the world; we are his Body and Blood.  And may I (or ‘you’) reflect it well.

We are called    (David Haas, verses 1 and 3)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkTtr7Sxgzo

Introductions/thanksgiving/announcements

MARY AL:  We are now at that part of today’s liturgy when we would like to hear more from you, … some of those thoughts on your minds.  When you share these comments with us, please unmute yourself…say what you would like to say…and then re-mute yourself so that others can be heard as well..

Pause briefly for people to collect their thoughts…and share them.

Do we have any newcomers here today, or those who are returning from some time away and would like to say “hello” to us today?

And do we have some of you who are gifted in your lives with blessings that you would like to share – in thanksgiving for them  - with us today?

How about announcements…does anyone have any information about something that they would like to share with us at this time?

Pause for people to think of a response to our questions


Closing Blessing and Commissioning 

LEE and ALL:  May our hearts be glad on our journeys as we dream new dreams, see new visions, and create a new heaven and earth.

May we live and work for compassion and peace as well as justice and non-violence in our hearts and promote those in the hearts of those we meet.

May we learn to bless and honor and hold in reverence one another, the earth, and all creation.

May we make a real difference in our part of the world—and help bring forth and develop the kin-dom of God on earth.

Thanks be to God!  Bring it on!  And to all, we say “Alleluia! Alleluia!!

Closing Song       Here I am Lord   (Dan Schutte)


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2HRisoyi2A

If you want to add an intercession to our MMOJ Community Prayer book, please send an email to Joan Meehan jmeehan515@aol.com  


If you want to invite someone to attend our liturgy, please refer them to the day’s liturgy at MaryMotherofJesus.org      


To support our community, please send your check to:

Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community

St Andrew UCC, 6908 Beneva Rd, Sarasota, FL 34238




Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Remembering Rev. Sally Brochu, ARCWP


Remembering Sally Brochu, ARCWP 

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

1pm EDT

 

Dotty:  Welcome: Thank you for gathering today to remember our dear Sally. Our hearts are so sad and we need this time to be together to grieve our loss. We will celebrate Sally’s life at a later date, but right now we are feeling the pain of her loss and missing her sweet smile and gentle voice.   At this very moment in time, Bishop Bridget Mary Meehan and Michael Rigdon, from our MMOJ community, are at the funeral home with Janet and family members to speak words of gratitude for the gift of our beloved Sally, who has now joined with the Communion of Saints.  Let us join with them in expressing our gratitude for the life of our dear Sally.  


Mary Al Gagnon:  Opening Prayer


Imagine Prayer:  (Prayer by Michael Podesta)


Imagine stepping onto a shore and finding it heaven …

Imagine taking hold of a hand and finding it God’s hand…

Imagine breathing new air and finding it celestial air…

Imagine feeling invigorated and finding it immortality …

Imagine passing from storm and tempest, to an unknown calm …

Imagine waking and finding it home …


Welcome Home, Sally …

 

Kathryn:  Believing that Sally’s life continues, we light this candle to remind us that Sally’s luminous spirit is with us now in this room, standing right here next to me and all of you.  

 

Sally Brochu, daughter of God, you are now at peace in the Holy One’s loving embrace.  This is our prayer of gratitude for you.

 

Dotty: We are grateful for your presence in our lives and for the many ways your life touched ours. 

 

We give thanks for the generosity of your loving. We give thanks for your laughter and your gentle spirit and delight in life. 

 

Mary Montavon: We give thanks for the many ways you nurtured, encouraged, and supported us as a soulmate, proud mother, grandmother, sister priest and dear friend. 


We give thanks for your ministry to the MMOJ community and the ARCWP community. 

Please, unmute to share any thoughts or prayers for Sally and her family. 


Kathryn:  Oh Holy One.  While we mourn the loss of our dear sister, Sally, and pray for her beloved Janet and family, we also express great gratitude for the gift of Sally in our lives.  She called us to be faithful followers of Jesus, our brother and Child of Humanity.  She led us by her example; as she lived justly, loved tenderly, and walked humbly with our God.  Dear Sally, may you now be forever at peace in the loving arms of our Holy One.  And to this we say: Amen and Alleluia! 

Song: Holy Angels by Sara Thomsen

https://youtu.be/8pTI44wgg8Q 



Click on video below to view the entire service in Zoom.


Thanks to Bridget Mary Meehan and Mary Theresa Streck for their words of Remembrance of our dear Sally Brochu.  We are a better world because of her presence on this Earth.     

Endless Is Your Love For Us by Tom Kendzia


 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hEkDQrN68ug

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

How to Accept Rejection with Grace (in response to Bullying on Social Media about Calle to Ordination) by Anne Tropeano ARCWP

 "...Only when I reach a place of inner freedom do I respond with loving kindness to those who degrade me. I do this in a true effort to make a respectful connection across the great chasm of difference between us..." 

https://www.fatheranne.com/blog/how-to-accept-rejection-with-grace

"Only in God, is my Soul at Rest...my Stronghold ... I Shall Not Be Afraid"- Psalm 62 by John Michael Talbot


 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VCWSz0mL888

The Morning Prayer of Belle Coeur by Sibyl Dana Reynolds ARCWP, Music- As Morning Breaks, Psalm 63 by John Michael Talbot

 As Morning Breaks (Psalm 63) John Michael Talbot


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzueAm3uyck


The Morning Prayer of Belle Coeur 

Beloved, You guide me in my desire to live as Your faithful servant. 

May my eyes be Your eyes, to recognize the depths of human suffering and the ecstasies of divine beauty. 

May my ears be Your ears, to hear the hidden truths within the hearts of those who bring their stories to my door. 

May my hands be Your hands, so Your healing love may gently fall on each person I touch and each task that I perform. 

May my words be Your words. Inspire my tongue to utter Your guidance, and encourage me to rest in silence, when silence is needed. 

O Blessed One, keep my heart forever open to fully feel life’s pain and delight. Help me to not turn away from those things that are difficult to witness, or those that cause me to be fearful. 

Still my trembling, and strengthen me through Your presence within me. Make me brave and guide my every action. Bless my work to Your glory. Amen

Ink and Honey by ©Sibyl Dana Reynolds


Monday, July 5, 2021

Sally Brochu ARCWP Passed Into Eternal Life on Thursday, July 1, 2021 by Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP

Right: Sally Brochu ARCWPP and on left Kathryn Shea ARCWP on left on day of their priestly ordination. 

Sally Brochu was ordained a priest in Sarasota, Florida on May 23,2015. She served as the lead Program Preparation Coordinator on the Preparation Team for applicants discerning a call to Ordination. Sally was a member of the pastoral team  and Board of Directors in Mary Mother of Jesus Inclusive Catholic Community. With her beloved partner, Janet, Sally  broke open the Word , presided at Eucharistic liturgies, and hosted a monthly spiritual book club for our MMOJ Community.  

Sally's deep faith, generous spirit and practical wisdom inspired me  She served people with a loving heart and a compassionate spirit. Before I met her, Sally was as a Chaplain in a Catholic Hospital. On a few occasions, she told fascinating stories about  people who were dying. Sometimes, they saw loved ones who had passed away before them.

In our last conversation, Sally planned her Celebration of Life with Janet and me. As she struggled for every breath, she exuded a peaceful spirit.  She smiled when I asked her to pray for our Women Priests Movement. 

Before leaving, Janet and I anointed Sally with holy oil. I began our prayer by inviting the Communion of Saints including Sally's dearly departed loved ones to gather around her bed.

A few days later, Sally shared with Janet that when she closed her eyes, she saw her departed loved ones.  She said that she had always wondered how the dying saw their loved ones and now she knew! 

Thank you, Sally, for giving us a glimpse of heaven! Thank you being the face of God in our world. 

I will miss you. So, will every one who knew you!

Jesus Does Not Bully Women Priests by Dr. Shanon Sterringer RCWP

 Jesus Does Not Bully Women Priests

Sunday, July 4, 2021

"God Is Always Choosing People" from Richard Rohr's Daily Meditation From the Center for Action and Contemplation

 

Julie pour water over Champ's head in baptism on grandparents, Pearl and Paul Miller's Lanai in Florida, 2021

 My Response: One of our major missions as Roman Catholic Women Priests in a renewed priestly ministry is to promote the people of God's empowerment and  belovedness in a community of equal disciples of Jesus. Bridget Mary Meehan ARCWP

 

Much of the Bible is largely character development and transformation of persons and institutions. It usually begins with an experience of “election” or chosenness. There’s no getting started, it seems, without somehow knowing oneself as special and empowered. Then the character—of people and groups—will indeed and always develop. We cannot begin the journey on a negative or problem-solving note like “sin management.” It all begins with an experience of chosenness, just as in marriage and friendship.

Think of the many, many stories of God choosing people. There are Moses and Miriam, Abraham and Sarah; there is Deborah, David, Jeremiah, and Esther. There is Israel itself. Much later there’s Peter, Paul, and most especially, Mary. God is always choosing concrete people. First impressions aside, God is not primarily choosing them for a role or a task, although it might appear that way. God is really choosing them to be and to image God in this world.

God needs images. God needs people to be willing instruments. It’s essential, though, for God’s instruments to know that they are not alone, that they are not just doing their own thing, but rather are doing God’s thing. When God chooses someone in the Bible, the standard opening line is “Do not be afraid” (Genesis 15:1), and the final line usually includes the promise “I will be with you” (Exodus 3:12).

Being chosen doesn’t mean that God likes one over another or finds some better than others. Almost always, in fact, those chosen are quite flawed or at least ordinary people. It is clear that their power is not their own. As Paul will put it, “If anyone wants to boast, they can only boast about the Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:31).

The paradox is that God’s chosenness is for the sake of communicating chosenness to everybody else! As in the Jonah story, this often takes people a long time to learn. Here is the principle: We can only transform people to the degree that we have been transformed. We can only lead others as far as we ourselves have gone. We have no ability to affirm or to communicate to another person that they are good or special until we know it strongly ourselves. Once we get our own “narcissistic fix,” as I call it, then we can stop worrying about being center stage. We then have plenty of time and energy to promote other people’s empowerment and specialness. Only beloved people can pass on belovedness.

 


 



Upper Room Inclusive Catholic Community - Liturgy of Interdependence - July 4, 2021, Presiders: Dennis McDonald, ARCWP, and Deven Horne

We Are All One Family, Born of the Same Spirit


(Deven) Welcome:  Good morning and welcome everyone. Today, Dennis McDonald and I, Deven Horne, invite you to celebrate the secular and sacred holiday of “interdependence”. The readings and reflections today open our minds and hearts to see the strings that connect our lives in the great cosmic web of life. May we feel the tug at our heartstrings of the ties that bind us.


(Dennis) Opening Prayer: Great Mystery, we gather this morning in the knowledge that all of creation is connected through the ever living source of life and love which flows throughout the Universe.  May we celebrate the interdependence we have with the bountiful earth, the teeming seas, the trees of the forest, our sister and brother animals, and the birds of the air. Let us recognize our need for one another, and the gifts each of us brings to our table of thanksgiving this day and always. Amen 


Opening Song: By Breath by Sara Thomsen

https://youtu.be/5HgOJiJRKMM 



Liturgy of the Word


(Mary S.) Reading 1: A reading from the works of Howard Thurman

We must proclaim the truth that all life is one and that we are all of us tied together. Therefore it is mandatory that we work for a society in which the least person can find refuge and refreshment. . . . You must lay your lives on the altar of social change so that wherever you are, there the Kingdom of God is at hand! 


These are the inspired words of Howard Thurman, and our community affirms them by saying, Amen.


(Santa) Reading 2: A reading from Sherri Mitchell, a member of the Penobscot people


N’dilnabamuk—“all my relations.” Many people have heard Native

people say “all my relations” after speaking or offering prayers.

But what does it really mean? All societies organize around some

sort of core principle. The core principle for Wabanaki societies is

relationship. Our story begins with an understanding that we are

related to all beings within creation. The two legged, the four

legged, the winged, the beings that crawl and slide along the

ground, the plants, the trees, and the living Earth are all our

relatives. Everything is interconnected and interdependent; the

well-being of the whole determines the well-being of any

individual part. We recognize that connection in our prayers, and

the understanding that the whole is shifted by every action of

each individual. There is one life, one breath that we all breathe.

Therefore, when we take any action out in the world, even when

we pray for ourselves, we impact all life. This belief forms the

foundational understanding [that] weaves through all of our other

values. It’s the thread that ties them all together. . . .


These are in the inspired words of Sherri Mitchell, a daughter of

the Holy One.  Our community affirms these words by saying,

Amen. 


Alleluia


(Mike O’Brien) Gospel: A reading from the First Letter to the Corinthians


The body is one, even though it has many parts; all the parts—many though they are—comprise a single body. And so it is with Christ. It was by one Spirit that all of us, whether we are Jews or Greeks, slaves, or citizens, were baptized into one body. All of us have been given to drink of the one Spirit. And that Body is not one part; it is many.


You, then, are the body of Christ, and each of you is a member of it.


These are the inspired words from the First Letter to the Corinthians, and our community affirms these words by saying, Amen.


Shared Homily - Dennis McDonald


As our country celebrates the 4th of July today, we must recall that in order to bring an end to British rule at the time, 13 separate colonies came together, working in unison, although not without struggle and disagreement, to stand against the injustice they experienced at the hands of a ruling monarch across the ocean. There was a need to be interdependent, to forge a common purpose, and to proclaim their dissolution of the bonds with England.  It was in being united in purpose that they were able to move forward and form the beginning of a new nation. 

And so, although we celebrate independence today, it is really interdependence that allows us to do so.  It is the recognition that we can’t go it alone, that we need connection to each other and all of creation to continue to bring about a world of love, compassion, and justice. 

N’dilnabamuk—“all my relations”, what a wonderful concept given to us in our second reading. The Wabanaki people live by this principle that we are related to all of creation. Thomas Aquinas called this “interconnectivity” stating “that all things are related to each other is evident from the fact that all are interconnected together to one end. The perfection of any one thing considered in isolation is an imperfection, for one thing is merely one part of the entire integrity of the universe arising from the assembling together of many singular perfections.” He goes on to say, “beauty is a way, a door, to the divine whether beauty be found in nature’s sunsets or trees or animals or sky; or whether it be found in the human works of poetry and music and truth-seeking and truth-telling and work for justice and compassion.”

We are called to recognize “all my relations” as we follow the way of Jesus and his message of love, compassion, and justice for all of creation.  The response to this call takes many shapes from caring for and speaking out for the environment, to reaching out and providing care to the suffering, to standing in solidarity with those fighting for justice and equality.  In all of this outreach it is important to recognize the need for interdependence/interconnectivity. It is recognizing that no one person can go it alone, that it takes a community of people with a common purpose to bring about change that will benefit all.  

Our Gospel reading calls to mind that we are members of the Body of Christ, all bringing our special “part” to that Body, connecting to “all my relations” to build one “single body” that as Howard Thurman states, works “for a society in which the least person can find refuge and refreshment”, and I would add where the divine plan for all creation finds fulfillment.  

What does “N’dilnabamuk – “all my relations” say to you? What might it mean to you to “lay your lives on the altar of social change”? Where do you see interdependence play out in your life?


(Kathie & Debbie) Statement of Faith


We believe in the Holy One, a divine mystery
beyond all definition and rational understanding,
the heart of all that has ever existed,
that exists now, or that ever will exist.

We believe in Jesus, messenger of the Divine Word,
bringer of healing, heart of Divine compassion,
bright star in the firmament of the Holy One's
prophets, mystics, and saints.

 We believe that We are called to follow Jesus
as a vehicle of divine love,
a source of wisdom and truth,
and an instrument of peace in the world.

We believe in the Spirit of the Holy One,
the life that is our innermost life,
the breath moving in our being,
the depth living in each of us.

We believe that the Divine kin-dom is here and now,
stretched out all around us for those
with eyes to see it, hearts to receive it,
and hands to make it happen.


Liturgy of the Eucharist


(Dennis) As we prepare for this sacred meal, we are aware of our call to serve, and just as Jesus is anointed, so is each of us. We bring to this table our blessings, cares and concerns.


We bring these and all deeply held blessings, cares, and concerns to the table of friendship and peace. 


Eucharistic Prayer 

(Eucharistic prayer taken from the work of Diarmuid O’Murchu and Jay Murnane)


(Deven) Please join in saying the Eucharistic Prayer


O Holy One, we stand at a critical moment in Earth’s history – a time when humanity must choose its future. 


As the world becomes increasingly interdependent and fragile, the future holds both peril and great promise.


May we recognize that, in the midst of a magnificent diversity of cultures and life forms, we are one human family and one Earth community with a common destiny. 


United with our vast universe, with our Mother-Planet and her people everywhere, with one another and You, Holy One, our spirits dance and sing this song of praise: 


Holy, Holy: Here in This Place by Christopher Grundy

https://youtu.be/sgkWXOSGmOQ


(Dennis) We give grateful thanks for those who came before us, for all those who gave from their hearts, who gave from their lives, that there might be a better world, a safer world, a kinder world, we pray for peace in their name. 


And for the children, that they may live, that they may have children of their own and that it will go on - this great blossoming that is meant to go on and on – we pray for peace, in their name. 


And for all peoples of this earth who have no voice in this,

For the animals that have no voice in this,

For the plants, the trees, the flowers that have no voice in this,

For all who share this earth with us, we pray for peace in their name.


We thank you for our brother, Jesus. He showed us so simply, so tenderly, how the world is in our hands. He had nothing in this world but your love, companions on the journey, and his very self. Together, that was more than enough, and that remains our clarity in the midst of confusion: the miracle of healing, new hope, nurturance, nourishment, liberation, and life.


(Deven) Please extend your hands in blessing. 

Your Spirit is upon the gifts of this Eucharistic table, bread of the grain and wine of the grape. They are gifts of wisdom, light and truth which remind us of our call to be the body of Christ to the world.


On the night before he faced his own death and for the sake of living fully, Jesus sat at the Seder supper with his companions and friends.  He reminded them of all that he taught them, and to fix that memory clearly within them, he bent down and washed their feet.


All lift their plate and pray the following:


When he returned to his place at the table, he lifted the Passover bread, spoke the blessing, broke the bread, and offered it to them saying:


Take and eat; this is my very self.


All lift their cup and pray the following:


He then raised high the cup of the covenant, spoke the grace, and offered it to them saying: 


Take and drink.

Whenever you remember me like this,

I am among you.

(pause and drink)


What we have heard with our ears, we will live with our lives; as we share communion, we will become communion, both Love’s nourishment and Love’s challenge.  


Please receive Communion saying: We are united in Divine Love


Communion Song :  O Siem (Joyful Greeting) by Susan Aglukark

https://youtu.be/TGC7uSugd8Y

Post-Communion Prayer


(Dennis) Loving Source of All, we have looked for others to save us and to save our world. Yet, we are called, and consecrated and sent into the world to establish justice and show the blessed fulfillment that comes with simplicity and the giving of ourselves in love.  We will make new our commitment to the harmony of the original vision of creation. 


We will open up wide all that has been closed about us, and our small circles. Like Jesus, in all openness, we will be filled with your own Spirit and renew the face of the earth.


For it is through learning to live as he lived,

And why he lived,

And for whom he lived,

That we awaken to your Spirit within,

Moving us to worship you truly,

O Holy One,

At this time and all time and in all ways.

And we say yes to You!


(Sharon) Let us pray together the prayer of Jesus:


O Holy One, who is within, around and among us,

We celebrate your many names.

Your Wisdom come.

Your will be done, unfolding from the depths within us,

Each day you give us all we need;

You remind us of our limits, and we let go.

You support us in our power, and we act with courage.

For you are the dwelling place within us, 

the empowerment around us,

and the celebration among us, now and forever.  Amen  

(Miriam Therese Winter)   


BLESSING


(Deven) Please extend your hands as we pray together our blessing: 

May God bless you that you remember 
we are all called
to continue God's redemptive work
of love and healing 
in Divinity’s place, in and through Divinity’s name,
in Divinity’s Spirit, continually creating
and breathing new life and grace
into everything and everyone we touch. Amen

Adapted from Prayer from Franciscan Missionary Society


Closing Song: America, the Beautiful by Jesse Palidofsky & John Morris 

https://youtu.be/IiydluD0PyM